NOI firm is hit by tax lien

March 18, 1995|By Norris P. West | Norris P. West,Sun Staff Writer

A Nation of Islam-affiliated security company that patrols high-rise public housing developments in Baltimore has not paid $58,846 in income taxes withheld from employees, the Internal Revenue Service says.

The IRS has filed a federal tax lien against NOI Security Control Services Inc., saying the company did not pay withholding taxes for three quarterly reporting periods betweem Sept. 30, 1993 and March 31, 1994.

The lien was filed in Baltimore Circuit Court Feb. 22. NOI Security can appeal the action.

Allen Ackerman, NOI Security vice president, could not be reached for comment yesterday.

The one-page IRS filing says the company has an unpaid balance despite demands from the federal government for payment.

Baltimore Housing Commissioner Daniel P. Henson III said the lien would not affect the company's $4.6 million contract with the city Housing Authority.

"This is an issue between them and a particular branch of government," Mr. Henson said. "I don't believe it's a breach of contract. If they fail to perform, it's a breach of contract. I don't recall a term in the contract that deals with this."

NOI Security was chosen in May to provide security at 16 publicly owned high-rise apartment buildings in the city, although it was the highest bidder among the four finalists. Housing Authority officials said at the time that they were less concerned with money than with finding a company with experience and an understanding of public housing security problems.

Federal Housing and Urban Development officials criticized the contract this month, saying the authority's procedures for selecting a company were flawed. HUD said in a letter that the authority might be forced to repay $1 million.

Nation of Islam affiliates also have security contracts in Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Chicago and Los Angeles, and have received high marks around the nation for reducing violent crime at public housing projects.

The company is affiliated with the organization of controversial Black Muslim leader Louis Farrakhan.

A series of articles in the Chicago Tribune this week reported that companies run by Mr. Farrakhan are riddled with debt and allegations of fraud, while the Muslim leader, some relatives and top aides live lavishly.

The Tribune reported that a number of tax delinquencies and court judgments have been lodged against Nation of Islam-affiliated companies and properties, including $354,588 in liens against security companies.

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